Sunday, October 26, 2008

What a weekend: IRL IndyCar Series racing down under for no points on the Streets of Surfers Paradise.

Yeah, you read it correct, the season is over, Scott Dixon and his #9 Ganassi Racing team has won the 2008 IRL IndyCar Series Championship and yet there is one more race to go. I was a little surprised with this one being added to the schedule like this and yet maybe not. I have never really been one who enjoys watching indycars race on the Streets of Surfers Paradise, however then again with so many teams and no points on the line, this could be a fun race, can you say no points racing, all out, new teammates, this could be go after all.

It’s always a good sign to see just how many teams would fly over 30 hours to Australia for a non-points event, but what a turn out, the entry list is a who’s who in indycar racing from Dan Wheldon back racing for Panther Racing, Dario Franchitti in Wheldon’s old ride at Ganassi racing, Buddy rice in at Dreyer & Reinbold Racing and from the former Champ car World Series and CART, Bruno Junqueira and Alex Tagliani, however no Paul Tracy, that’s a sad, he won at surfers paradise back in 1995-1996, I was looking forward to watching Tracy race again this season, only two races all season long, first at the finale CCWS race at Long Beach and then again Rexall Edmonton Indy in Edmonton, hopefully he will have a full-time ride somewhere either in NASCAR or the IRL IndyCar Series next season (2009). Good start.

So the question now is, will the IRL IndyCar Series be returning to Surfers Paradise in 2009? The thing about temporary street course’s are, the racing is a fine art, hitting your marks within an inch or two of wall while trying to running all out lap after lap, at the same time defending your position and trying to overtake the car in the front of you. Normally these street courses don’t have such good racing, however every now and then they do, it’s all in what you consider good racing.

That means you have to have passing and for the race itself, while I only caught the second half of the race due to DVR problems, it wasn’t bad to watch on television.

Originally I was more concerned about the course itself, I mean it looks like they didn’t change the course from last year or the year before, however some of the corners were interesting at times along with the curbing, but who knows.

So will they, I’m sure the winner Ryan Briscoe would think so and maybe even second place Scott Dixon, however I would expect to see Australia back on the 2009 schedule, but after that, who knows with this economy, the travel costs alone have got to be huge for 20+ teams to go down there with all of their equipment, back cars and people, still it could work. Comments.

- Racedriven